Here is the definition of a coaching culture according to two renowned coaches:
Natalie Ashdown, CEO of the Open Door Coaching Group, puts it as ‘the majority of people in the organization using coaching techniques and principles including strong listening and questioning skills, to bring out the best in individuals and teams, and that this is the common way of engaging in conversations, rather than telling people what to do, giving advice, mentoring and other techniques’.
While Thomas Crane, the author of “The Heart of Coaching”, shares that ‘all members of the culture fearlessly engage in candid, respectful relationships, about how they can improve their working relationships and individual and collective work performance. All have learned to value and effectively use feedback as a powerful learning tool to produce personal and professional development, high-trust working relationships, continually improving job performance, and ever-increasing customer satisfaction.’
To summarize, a coaching culture is a culture geared towards success. One of the ways to kick-start a coaching culture in your workplace is to implement and adopt a coaching model for the organization. For example, the GROW model serves as an instrument to steer a goal-setting mindset – to understand where you are now, and what to do to get where you want to be in the future. That being said, having a consistent coaching model is not the only element for a successful coaching culture.
A coaching culture is a workplace culture that breathes, lives and practices coaching in the most simplistic nature – it is where coaching becomes a part of everyday speak and a new lifestyle at the workplace.
Putting the culture into practice
Initiating, changing and implementing a new culture into any environment is not an easy task. Change is not always welcomed with open arms for many different reasons including complacency, fear of failure and even lack of determination to try something new. However, it is not an impossible task.
Jill McGinn, General Manager of HR of an American-owned multinational service company in Australia shared her insights in a case study of a real coaching culture rollout in her organization. Her first step was to obtain her coaching certifications and qualifications. That way, she held credibility in introducing coaching skills where she was working. The qualifications helped kick-start her efforts, as people trusted what she said and did in relation to cultivating a coaching culture.
A possible next step is to build a network of support. A culture cannot be cultivated when only one person is applying it in a company of 50 or 5000 people. Look for people who would be ready to accept and receive coaching openly. When they experience positive results from coaching, will become easier for others to accept it and thus creating good word of mouth and feedback.
It is also important to remain patient, as results from coaching are not immediate. Many aspects of human potential like work performance, better communication and stronger team synergy and growth will take time. Keep at it; keep the faith as you create a culture that will benefit the organization in the longer term.
As a leader, remain grounded in your values. Be steadfast in coaching principles and values such as integrity, dedication, loyalty, communication, commitment, accountability and so on. Your example is leading whom you are coaching.
The journey of integrating a coaching culture into a new environment comes with constant open and effective communication with people all around you. This communication can also serve as a strategy to spread the coaching culture.
Above all remember to test the readiness of individuals, teams or the organization before implementing a coaching culture. Change will only be possible when people desire to accept and embrace the change.
Consider the following as you embark on a journey of implementing a coaching culture wherever you are:
A coaching culture…
· Instills positivity in people
· Is geared for success
· Helps people realize their strengths and potential
· Empowers people to act on their strengths potential
· Allows people to discover their purpose
· Encourages a visionary and goal-setting mindset
· Increases work performance and job satisfaction
· Contributes to long-term growth in a company
· Builds characters based on positive principles and values
· Builds self-confidence and self-esteem
· Builds people for life in general – career, family, parenting, etc.
· Builds leaders for the future
Do you desire to make a difference in the culture of your organization? You surely CAN!
Be on your way to learning the building blocks of coaching and “how-to” create a dynamic workplace coaching culture by becoming an ICF certified coach through our Cert IV and Australian Diploma in Workplace and Business Coaching. This accredited coaching certification program (ICF-ACTP) is conducted by our Founder and Principal Coach of APICoaching, Mel Leow, who is also the co-author of “Bring Out Their Best”.
To find out more, do connect with Sean at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at 03-56110518.